A MOTHER who drank a can of vodka while stopping at a Dubbo day care centre placed the lives of two children at risk when her car ploughed head-on into trees.
Dubbo Local Court heard the 39-year-old was red-faced and dazed when police arrived at the accident scene on Boundary Creek Road at 5.10pm on October 22 last year.
The car was written off but the children, aged 1 and 2 were not injured.
The woman was found to have a blood alcohol reading more than three-and-a-half times above the legal limit.
The mother, who cannot be named to protect the identity of the children, was deeply remorseful when she was brought before Magistrate Brian Van Zuylen on a charge of high-range drink-driving.
Prosecution facts tendered to the court said the woman admitted drinking the vodka when she was spoken to by police.
A solicitor from the Legal Aid Commission said the accident had been a seminal event in the woman's life.
"Soon after the accident occurred she started seeing a drug and alcohol counsellor and entered a treatment program," the solicitor said.
"She was served with a court attendance notice while in the treatment facility.
"Her responses were not court motivated. She has applied herself diligently to rehabilitation and upon discharge from treatment resumed drug and alcohol counselling.
"She remains completely abstinent from alcohol."
Magistrate Van Zuylen said the woman placed herself, the children and the public at extreme risk.
"It is lucky you didn't kill yourself and the two children while demonstrating how incapable you were of controlling the vehicle," the magistrate said.
"You had slow response times and difficulty recalling where you put your wallet.
"You have done a drug and alcohol program, continue to receiving counselling and are abstinent from alcohol.
"This has been a life change event. A damaged $15,000 car was not covered by insurance. You have thrown the money away by drunk driving.
"I am persuaded not to consider a prison sentence because of the steps you have taken to rehabilitate yourself."
The woman was fined $1800 and disqualified from driving for two years and six months.